February 13, 2016
Ok So I am not sure how to start this one off!
I want to share with you a revelation that I had from scripture today. I have decided, that along with my regular reading and study, to add on Leviticus. I can almost hear you groan as you read this, but I don’t think that you will be groaning when I am finished.
Leviticus 3:“‘1 If your offering is a fellowship offering, and you offer an animal from the herd, whether male or female, you are to present before the Lord an animal without defect. 2 You are to lay your hand on the head of your offering and slaughter it at the entrance to the tent of meeting.
Ok, so the first understanding came to me as I read and tried to make sense of this all. The Fellowship Offering stood out to me. As I searched to understand the Fellowship Offering, I came across its meaning in my study bible. It is an offering of “peace” or, quite literally, fellowship! It is the only sacrifice which the offerer may eat some of the sacrifice, as well. In other words, it’s not just for the priest, and it’s not to just be full burnt up like a sin offering. Just as Jesus broke bread with his disciples and had fellowship with them so God had fellowship with his people through this offering.
The second understanding came as I read “You are to lay your hand on the head of your offering”. This may seem a simple verse and is easily passed over. As I read it, though, I asked, “what does that mean? Why is it so specific?” I decided to look into it.
When they laid a hand on the head what they did is acknowledge that this animal had become their sin and, therefore, it has become an atonement for sin. WOW! This animal had become their atonement for sin!! Now this was done is all of the offerings - the animal became the atonement for the people.
Now what does this all have to do with anything? Well, let me add one more verse that I will wrap this all up together with.
Leviticus 3:5 Then Aaron’s sons are to burn it on the altar on top of the burnt offering that is lying on the burning wood; it is a food offering, an aroma pleasing to the Lord.
So focus on this point: “An aroma pleasing to the Lord”. Here is where it all comes together. I had always thought that God was pleased for the sacrifice specifically, like when we offer him a sacrifice of time, energy, or finances, that the sacrifice was a “pleasing aroma” to the Lord. Now I do still believe that our sacrifices are a pleasing aroma to Him, but I also believe that He is pleased for a whole other reason.
I believe that the aroma is pleasing to him because of the atonement.
You see the Jews did this for all of their sacrifices. After they had sacrificed an animal, they had atonement with God, which means that they had relationship again. The only way to relationship was through the atonement and without that atonement they would never be able to have a friendship with God as God so desperately desired.
We can see in the Old Testament that God desired a relationship with his people so badly! In fact, God left heaven to live and dwell among his people in a tent. Remember that they built that whole tent so that God could come and dwell with his people.
So you see that God’s desire for friendship leads us to Jesus. HIS SACRIFICE was the perfect atonement. It brought us back into a permanent relationship with God that’s because of a pleasing sacrifice. Jesus’ sacrifice.
When I read this in Leviticus, I realized that the “pleasing aroma” was, in fact, because of atonement; it was because of relationship, friendship, and more than just the act of sacrifice. It was relationship with his people and now relationship with us.
So, as hard as Leviticus is to read, we can see that God’s love and desire for his people is shown with how he constantly reaches after the atonement of our sins so that he can have a relationship with us. Jesus is seeking after a friendship with us.
I could go on for a while on this but you and I can see that the most important part of anything is the atonement of sins and the restoration of relationship with God that it brings. You see God desired to be with the Jews so badly that he set the Law in place so that it could eventually point and be fulfilled by Jesus Christ. HE would become the final sacrifice for the atonement of sin, and HE would become the final bridge of salvation and relationship. HE would be the way, the truth and the life that the entire world was seeking!